Membership Database Selection Guide

Member data is at the heart of any association, non-profit or club. After all, your members, supporters and/or volunteers are the foundation on which your organization was built and the key to its continued success. This means that the care and maintenance of your membership database are critical.

But membership organizations with a small staff and/or volunteer administration often struggle to maintain lists of members, volunteers or supporters. Many organizations are using desktop tools – like Microsoft Excel, File Maker Pro and Microsoft Access – to keep track of member records. However if more than one person has access to these,  you can end up with duplicate or outdated records. If this scenario sounds all too familiar, you may want to find a solution that reduces staff and/or volunteer time and optimizes functionality. Since we realize that changing to a new system can be time-consuming and costly, we're providing some information, suggestions and tools to help you through this process.

Is this Guide for you?

Wild Apricot created this Membership Database Selection Guide to help small member-based organizations, associations and non-profits that are just getting started with formally managing their member data or are realizing the need to switch systems. It is designed to help you:

  • identify your membership database requirements;
  • understand the various software/system options available;
  • and help you determine the best solution for your specific needs.

What this Guide IS NOT:

This Guide was created to help small organizations and is not designed for organizations that are required to create formal RFPs (Request for Proposal) or prepare for a software tender.

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Creative Commons Licence

Wild Apricot Software Selection Guide by Wild Apricot is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. Based on a work at

Please include a link to if you copy, distribute or re-transmit any of the documents that make up this guide. 
For permissions beyond the scope of this license, contact us.

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Wild Apricot Inc. 144 Front Street West Suite 725, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5J 2L7